Thinking of 4 door Wrangler as tow vehicle

Discussion in 'Tow Vehicles, Hitch & Towing' started by Checkered24, Aug 8, 2012.

  1. Checkered24

    Checkered24 Member

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    I am getting a small PUP (dry weight 1099, GVWR 1680, 145 lbs hitch), and will be getting a new vehicle with which to tow it. I have always been a fan of Wranglers too (owned 2 TJ's prior) and after doing some research, I am thinking one of the newer 4 door models would be more than sufficient.

    Stats on them are as follows. Max tow capacity 3500 lbs, max hitch weight 350. GVWR is 5418 with a curb of 4294, and a max GCWR of 8090.

    I seem to have plenty of wiggle room here with weight.

    If I maxed out the loads of both car and trailer, I am at 7098 lbs, 992 below the max GCWR. I should have plenty of room for gear and people, as we have been tent camping and fitting everything we take into a Honda Accord sedan. I would not anticipate sway issues, as the Jeep has a decent wheelbase in the 4 door version. Also, they have anti-sway programming in the stability program. The Jeep is putting out 285 hp, and the trailer has electric brakes, both of which should make going and stopping easy at this weight.

    Anything else I am not seeing or missing? I have also been looking at Ford Escapes with 3500 lb capacities, and other similar smaller SUV's).
     
  2. mnebinger

    mnebinger Livin' The Dream!

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    I traded in my 2door Wrangler after I talked DW into not driving her car on our last trip. No one was happy that trip. The dog (small lap dog) didn't have a place to sit comfortably, the boys (10 & 13) were too close together in the back seat, and DW felt very cramped.

    Plus it didn't help that DW always thought it rode too rough!

    I say all this just to point out that there isn't as much space side to side as any other vehicle. They are made narrow to fit between trees :)

    I miss my '06 Wrangler but the '07 4Runner is a much better TV for our family.


    DH '70
    DW '67
    DS1.0 '98
    DS2.0 '02
    And Solomon, our inside Cavalier Spaniel
     
  3. Tyreguy

    Tyreguy Member

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    Go for it! [:D]

    I'll have you know that towing with our JKU is most pleasent. Our pup is approx 1000lbs, but doesn't have brakes, and the Jeep handles it nicely. Now, my JKU has the 3.8 in it...its no speed demon when towing...I only pull our pup at 60mph with the o/d off, and I consitently get 17/18 mpg! The newer JK's have the potent 3.6 with the much needed hp and the newer 5 speed auto with the bigger tranny cooler. I would expect the same mpg when towing. Go ahead..be a Jeeper...we need more Jeep owners here! You won't be disappointed!
     
  4. Checkered24

    Checkered24 Member

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    Good points, but if you have never been inside a JKU, then you might be surprised at the room compared to a TJ. I owned two TJ's (an '02 Sahara, and a '03 Sport). Although the JKU is no Grand Cherokee for room, the passanger compartment is significantly wider and roomier feeling than the old TJ's. They ride a lot better too (again, they are no Grand Cherokee, but they are lightyears ahead of the TJ's). :)
     
  5. Checkered24

    Checkered24 Member

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    Thanks for the reassuring comments regarding the JKU's and towing! Sounds like the new 3.6L should handle it without breaking a sweat. I haven't driven one yet (I have driven the 3.8 JK's), and have some fairly high expectations for it overall. 18 MPG would certainly beat the 14 I used to get regularly in my TJ's!
     
  6. JeepMama

    JeepMama New Member

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    We tow with a 2 door JK. With trailer brakes. 2 adults, 2 kids ages 5 & 7 - no dogs! But who wouldn't want a wrangler??? they are pretty cool...

    [​IMG]

    the roof rack helps a lot :)
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  7. Jeepin Dad

    Jeepin Dad New Member

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    They are capable tow vehicles for the smaller pups, we were at a charity trail ride this past weekend and there were quite a few wranglers that were towing pups and small campers.

    Even with the 3.8l I barely notice our Taos when pulling, I have the 6 speed manual with 4.10 gears and 33" tires, coming up steep grades I sometimes need to drop one gear lower than I normally would. With the 3.6 it should pull really easy. With the 2 door I did notice it pushing me when stopping and trying to slow coming down steep grades before I had the brakes hooked up, with the brakes now it handles great, the longer wheelbase of the unlimited should make it even more stable.

    An added bonus is you have a tow rig that lets you enjoy the great outdoors while towing topless and doorless.
     
  8. turborich

    turborich Active Member

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    A customer came into work today, He has a new 4 door Wrangler with the 3.6 liter engine. He's towing 21 foot travel trailer with it. I weighed the tongue weight and it was 850lbs. He's getting a WDH and brake controller installed. I'm not sure what the total trailer weight is but it's heavy as it's a 1977 travel trailer. If the 10% rule is correct then he's around 8,000 pounds.
     
  9. Checkered24

    Checkered24 Member

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    [:O] Wow, he is WAY over weight!
     
  10. turborich

    turborich Active Member

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    That's what I was thinking but the tech said that he is well within his limits. [?:~{]
     
  11. turborich

    turborich Active Member

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    Just as a follow up on this. I checked and the Jeep is in fact rated at 3500lbs. The trailer is around 8,000 lbs so even with a WDH he is towing illegally. I can't believe the tech let this one slide. [2C]
     
  12. 4xMeteor

    4xMeteor Active Member

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    Don't really like the 4 door Wranglers (Personal Viewpoint). We just pack every spot possible. Before the PUP, it was interesting but we did it.

    Before the PUP - and the inside, yep, I packed around the kids [:D] They were like little sardines.
    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]

    But seriously, 8,000# is too much for a Wrangler - IMO.

    Hope to get a roof rack someday, would make it easier.
     
  13. adamteja

    adamteja New Member

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    The JKU is much bigger than the TJ . I had an 02 TJ and wife now as a 12 JKU. The kids love it. They look pained when i make them ride in my SUV, guess ill have to step it up when its time to get a new car, HA!

    The JKU only comes with a 4pin trailer plug, so I need to get a 7 pin and brake controller added.

    Id say go for it! ©let us know how it works out!
     
  14. themanfromvan

    themanfromvan Van, PA - Near The PA Wilds

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    I towed with two short wheelbase vehicles. I didn't like it. You tend to get "pushed around" more, I think, when the TV has a short wheelbase and you can't get much shorter than a Jeep.
     
  15. natedog_37

    natedog_37 New Member

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    Cabelas You were right by my place. I wanted a 4 door jeep but it couldnt tow my camper got a ram instead.
     
  16. chris15005

    chris15005 New Member

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    Don't do it i have a 4 door and had a 2 door both 2012's with the pentastar v6 's they both are dogs and fuel mileage is a joke just towing my tag along trailer they hunt for gears. I traded my 2 door in on a Ram truck to tow our pup still have the 4 door and am buying an old CJ to have some trail fun again.
     
  17. blackhills jk

    blackhills jk New Member

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    First off, I live in the Black Hills of South Dakota where its hilly where ever you go. I just traded off my 2009 4- door JK for a 2012 Quad cab Ram 1500. JK was ok on flat ground, but if you were on any kind of a hill, it really had a hard time. It would bog down then all of a sudden shift down to a very low gear and run the tach up to at least 5000. I have heard that the 2012's are somewhat better, but I have my doubts. My Ram also kills the JK on gas mileage both empty and pulling...not even close. Remember I am a Trail Guide for Jeep Jamboree so I am a huge Jeep guy (Still have my TJ). IMHO, they are just not meant for pulling those, but I could wrong about the new ones.
     
  18. Jeepin Dad

    Jeepin Dad New Member

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    Sounds like you guys both have automatics, what gearing do you have? How big of a pup are you pulling, the OP was only looking to tow a small pup?

    Like I said before with the 6-speed and 4.10's my 2 door pulls our 1500 lb Taos without a problem. Granted the 2 door is a few hundred pounds lighter than the 4 door but I have towed with the Jeep loaded both heavy and light and did not notice much of a difference. With the manual I can keep the RPMs in the 3.8's power band. I don't think the mpgs are to bad either considering it is an aerodynamic brick, I usually get 17-18 mpg and 14-16 mpg while towing.
     
  19. Steph

    Steph Member

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    I have to agree with Jeepin Dad and Jeep Mama. We have an '04 Wrangler Unlimited 2 door with the bit longer wheelbase. We pull our 8' camper and don't even know that it's back there.

    I do have to agree that after a few hours the Jeep is not the most comfortable ride, but I can make do. I can also understand why kids would not be happy in the back seat, but that's not an issue for us because we don't have any Mini-Jeepsters. Usually we tow probably not more that a few hours from home.

    Jeep Mama - Could you post some pics of your Jeep zoomed in more on your Jeep. I'm interested in the top rack. Toying with idea of putting one on ours. It would be nice to be able to throw some things on top if we wanted to. Thanks!
     
  20. Jeepin Dad

    Jeepin Dad New Member

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    It is a Warrior Products Safari Rack, rated for 400 lbs. Front ties into the windshield brackets and rear is bolted through the body. I nomally pull the basket off and just have the bars on for everyday running, I can use the bars as a canoe rack.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     

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